Patreon comes for conservatives

The Free Speech Wars have progressed from Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube to a new platform: Patreon. Patreon is a membership and subscription service that allows creators to collect regular payments from subscribers.

Patreon killed the accounts of YouTuber Carl Benjamin, also known as the Sargon of Akkad, for using hate speech. Patreon published a transcript of the video it claimed was the trigger to the decision, which in their words “includes serious attacks, or even negative generalizations, of people based on their race [and] sexual orientation.” Patreon has a policy of banning hate speech on its platform and defined Benjamin’s video as fitting the definition.

The right is fighting back against these attacks on free speech. Cognitive psychologist Jordan Peterson and podcaster Sam Harris are organizing push-backs against Patreon and searching for alternative funding platforms. “We’ve been determining what our options are,” Peterson said in a video. “We looked at Subscribe Star, but it looks like PayPal decided to cut funding out from them.”

Harris has not been banned from Patreon but decided to close his account on the platform in a show of solidarity with Benjamin and Peterson.

“As many of you know, the crowdfunding site Patreon has banned several prominent content creators from its platform,” said Harris. “While the company insists that each was in violation of its terms of service, these recent expulsions seem more readily explained by political bias. Although I don’t share the politics of the banned members, I consider it no longer tenable to expose any part of my podcast funding to the whims of Patreon’s ‘Trust and Safety’ committee.”

The right is fighting back against deplatforming. Our voices will not be silenced.
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